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United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

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Appeals for the Federal Circuit
Court of Appeals
Judges: 11
Posts: 12
Vacancies: 1
Active judges
Senior Judges
Former Judges
(Numbers indicate % of seats vacant.)
More than 40%
U.S. Federal Courts
General jurisdiction courts
Supreme Court of the United States
U.S. Courts of Appeal
Federal district courts
U.S. territorial courts
Subject-matter jurisdiction
Bankruptcy courts
Court of Federal Claims
Armed Forces
Veterans Claims
Tax Court
International Trade
Intelligence Surveillance
Federal judges
Federal judiciary

The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit is a United States court of appeal. It was created by Congress with passage of the Federal Courts Improvement Act of 1982.


The Federal Circuit is the only one of the thirteen federal appeals courts whose jurisdiction is determined entirely on the subject of the lawsuits it hears, rather than on the geographical location from which the appeal originated.

Specifically, it is the job of the Federal Circuit to hear all appeals from United States district courts related to:

  • Non-tort monetary complaints against the federal government where the contested dollar amount is under $10,000 (the "Little Tucker Act").
  • All appeals from decisions of any of the United States district courts where the original action included a complaint arising under the patent laws, except, as the Supreme Court has decided, not if the patent claims arose solely as counter-claims by the defendant.[1]
  • The other federal appellate courts can now hear patent counter-claims in theory. However, this happens infrequently.

The Federal Circuit's jurisdiction is set out as:


Active judges

Senior judges

See also

External links


  1. Holmes Group, Inc. v. Vornado Air Circulation Systems, Inc., 2005. A bill to eliminate this situation, H.R. 2955, was proposed on June 16, 2005 in the 109th Congress, but never passed.
  2. The White House:Press Release, "President Obama Names Two to U.S. Circuit Courts," September 29, 2010